Kentucky Week: Kendall's look at the game

LEXINGTON - Josh Kendall takes a look at Georiga's game with Kentucky.

Georgia (6-3, 3-3 SEC) vs. Kentucky (4-4, 2-3 SEC)

Kickoff: 3:30 p.m. (TV: No live television, Radio: 940-AM)

Stadium: Commonwealth Stadium (67,606)

Kickoff weather: High of 50, low of 39; partly cloudy; 10 percent chance of rain

Series: Georgia leads 47-10-2

Last meeting: Georgia won 45-13 in Athens in 2005

Odds: Georgia favored by seven

Injuries: Probable: WR Mohamed Massaquoi (leg); Out: OL Chester Adams (ankle); PK Ben Wilson (knee); LB Darius Dewberry (hamstring). Kentucky: Questionable: RB Tony Dixon (hamstring); Out: RB Rafael Little (knee), OL Trai Williams (ankle), OL Jason Leger (shoulder).


The Bulldogs seem to have labeled Kregg Lumpkin as their clear No. 1 back. He's gotten 37 carries to Danny Ware's 10 since the injury to starter Thomas Brown. Lumpkin has responded with a 4.6-yard per carry average but had a costly fumble last week. Kentucky probably will be down to its third-string running backs after the hyper-talented Rafael Little went down to a knee injury and second-teamer Tony Dixon strained his hamstring, The bad news for Georgia is that redshirt freshman Alfonso Smith purportedly is the fastest Wildcat. Smith also is a threat to catch the ball out of the backfield. Kentucky's offensive line is hardly dominant, though. The Wildcats are 10th in the league, and 106th in the nation, in rushing (82.8 ypg).


The mantra for Georgia's aerial attack hasn't changed all season – don't throw interceptions and catch passes. The Bulldogs have emphasized those things all year but have yet to do them. The chances are getting slim. Sophomore tight end Tripp Chandler, starting in place of Martrez Milner, could turn into a gifted pass catcher. Under the tutelage of former Tennessee offensive coordinator Randy Sanders, Kentucky's Andre' Woodson has blossomed. He's thrown an SEC-best 18 touchdown passes this year, and is blessed with two of the top wide receivers in the league – Dicky Lyons and Keenan Burton. Lyons, who was placed off limits to the media after predicting a big win last week against Mississippi State, can make show-stopping catches.


Georgia's defense returned to its early season form against Florida, giving up just 14 points and allowed just 113 second-half yards. The return of cornerback Ramarcus Brown from a hamstring injury made a big difference due to his ability to cover one-on-one. The Wildcats' defense has been, to put it bluntly, awful. Kentucky is 109th in the country in rushing defense and 115th in passing defenses. That's a hard double to pull off considering most teams are bad only in the area that other teams pick on. Opponents pick on both phases of the Kentucky defense. If Georgia's passing game can't get on track against the Wildcats, there's no hope for the remainder of the season.

Special Teams

The Bulldogs have a handful of special teams areas they need to work on. Kickoff returns is the most pressing. After a fast start in that area, Georgia has slipped back to its more normal form, which is lousy. Also, punter Gordon Ely-Kelso, despite still leading the SEC in average, has fallen off his pace and is battling a fatigued leg. Kentucky's special teams is paced by its punt return team, which leads the league in yards (17.4 yards per return), but top return man, Rafael Little, is hurt and won't play today. Kickoff returner Keenan Burton also is dangerous, though.

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